Sad to say but I lost another koi to illness. Louie the asagi died of some internal illness. The only correlation we saw of his illness with the other koi that we lost was that the illness was brought on when we turned on the grow lights. I was visiting my koi at Koi Acres and talked to Mikki and Devin Swanson about my dying asagi. After looking at some photos/videos and asking some questions – Devin asked if my koi were eating. I said they haven’t been fed for awhile since the water temperature was 50 or less. He conjectured that the lights might be fooling the koi into more activity…lack of food, perfect temperatures for aeromonas, the right temperature for depressed immune systems – my koi were in the zone to get sick. So my options would be to change the water temperature and/or encourage the koi to eat. I was not very hopeful that the koi would eat but I gave feeding a whirl. Devin and Mikki were absolutely right – the koi were a little hesitant but they have begun eating again and acting like their usual hungry, piggy selves.
Lily, the shiro utsuri is doing well at Koi Acres. She is part of a growout sponsored through Koi Acres. When she came out of the mud pond in October, she looked a little swollen (probably eating too many bugs…). She now has a more slimmed down shape and looks good. She also had some more sumi (black) on her including a cute little curl of black on the side of her face in October. To my surprise, her sumi has changed over the last two months and some of the sumi has disappeared again. I guess I shouldn’t have been very surprised since shiro utsuris are often not “finished” for five to seven years. Lily does have some beautiful white skin which is very desirable.
While penning in notes about Louie’s illness in my notebook, I calculated how much I have spent purchasing koi and their disposition since 2011. In general, we have spent a fair amount of koi for a lot of koi. It took me five and a half years but I’ve finally gotten to the point where I am not going to buy the little tosai koi. The tosai koi are cute to watch, it’s fun to grow them out but they really are a waste of money. Instead of buying a few tosai, I could spend an equal amount on a larger koi with greater certainty of its potential. I think everyone gets to the point where you look in your pond and think about raising the overall quality little by little. We have some very nice koi now but I hope to continue to improve what’s swimming around in the future.
For now I’m pretty content with the crew – here’s a pretty long (8:37) video of how they’re doing in the winter pool.